WASHINGTON, D.C.—The American Television Alliance (ATVA) has issued a statement about the Tegna, Dish TV carriage dispute, saying “this blackout is another example of broadcast conglomerates prioritizing profit over people.”
The ATVA, whose members include cable, satellite and telco operators as well as Dish, complained that the black out of Tegna stations in 53 U.S. markets impacting nearly 3 million Dish TV customers is part of a larger pattern of broadcasters making unreasonable financial demands on pay TV providers during negotiations for retransmission consent agreements.
The revenue broadcasters have gained from these fees has grown to more than 12 billion dollars today, ATVA claimed.
“Tegna’s demand for nearly a billion-dollar fee increase during the height of fall TV viewership is unacceptable yet unsurprising,” said ATVA spokesperson Jessica Kendust. “This weekend, millions of football fans across the country will be disappointed when they settle in to watch the game and realize it’s unavailable. They can blame big broadcast for that.”
In a statement on the black out, Tegna spokesperson Anne Bentley has said “Dish has refused to reach a fair, market-based agreement with us based on the competitive terms we’ve used to reach deals with numerous other providers that reflect the current market. While Dish is one of our smaller distributors, we regret any inconvenience for any of our customers, and hope that Dish will come back to the table to get a deal done to return our valuable programming to their system.”
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George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.